Self-fulfillment allows you to print or outsource orders yourself rather than using one of our five Integrated Print Vendors. Self-fulfilling your print and product sales allows you to offer custom products outside of those available from our Integrated Print Vendors while also giving you -- the photographer -- more control over image production.
How it Works
You create the prints and products that you’d like to offer on your site, then create your pricing profiles. When a client places an order, you’ll receive a notification to your email on file, and it will be up to you to send the order off to the lab of your choice or handle the printing yourself.
Using our Print Vendor Network
Orders for self-fulfilled prints or products can be fulfilled by a registered print lab from the PhotoShelter Print Vendor Network.
Photographers should have a relationship with a lab in our Print Vendor Network prior to sending orders to that lab. If you plan to have a print lab fulfill your items, we encourage you to check with the lab to see the range of sizes and products available and determine how you will be billed by the lab.
We charge a transaction fee on the total amount of each sale, minus any shipping or tax. This transaction fee applies to all orders, including self-fulfilled orders. We will assess the fee at the time of the sale and add it to your next month's PhotoShelter statement. Please note that transaction fees are separate from any fees assessed by your billing provider. The fee percentage is based on account tier:
- Basic: 10%
- Standard: 9%
- Pro: 8%
Setting Up Self-Fulfilled Prints & Products
Creating your Print and Product List
1. Select "Sell" > "Self-Fulfillment" from the Navigation Bar.
2. Click the "Create New Print/Product" button to add a new item.
3. Use the fields provided to create and describe your item. You should clearly indicate size in the Product Name (e.g. “8x10 Signed Print” or “20x30cm Print”) so buyers are informed of their options when shopping. If you plan to have a print lab fulfill your orders, you may want to see how the vendor describes their own products so you can use the same selling points to market yours.
4. Specify height and width (English units only) or indicate a custom size. This sizing is for internal use only and is not displayed to buyers. Custom size descriptions can be up to 20 characters long. This is useful if you prefer metric or special sizes (e.g. “A4” or “30x20cm”).
If the custom size field is used, the buyer will not be able to select his or her own crop when checking out. If you are creating a self-fulfilled item defined as a product (as opposed to a print), you may opt to define the image’s dimensions, but it’s not required in this case.
Note: Although height and width are not required if you specify a custom size, they are useful for ensuring proper sorting of the options. For instance, if you are offering an "A4" self-fulfill print in addition to standard EZ Prints sizes, entering the correct dimensions for your print in inches (in this case, 8.3 x 11.7) will place your print after "8x10" prints, but before "11x14" prints.
5. Lastly on this page, if you chose a print as your item type, you will indicate the finish options, which will be displayed to the buyer. These include:
- Stretched Canvas
Keep in mind that each print size you'd like to offer must be created as a separate self-fulfilled product. However, you don't have to define a different product for each finish you want to offer -- just check off the boxes for all of the finishes you want to offer for that particular size, and your customers will see these as finish options when adding this print size to their cart.
6. When you’ve made your selections, click the “Continue to Shipping” button. Follow the steps in the next section of this article to set up your shipping options.
Configuring Your Shipping Options
Because self-fulfilled products can vary in size and weight, you can create specific shipping options per item and location. If using a lab in the PVN, we highly recommend you contact them to find out more about their shipping options.
1. When setting your shipping options, the following fields must be filled out:
- Country: You may create a separate shipping entry for each country you want to support, or you can choose "[All other countries]" to charge the same rate for all countries other than those you specifically indicate. Please note that if a customer attempts to purchase a self-fulfilled item in a country you haven't specified shipping options for, they will be unable to proceed with their purchase.
- Method: Shipping vendors (e.g. FedEx) are listed, as well as more generic options, such as 2-day air.
- Base Fee: The base fee is the initial fee for shipping the item. You can specify the fee for one item or for multiple items. For example, if the item is a signed 8x10 inch print, then you might allow buyers to purchase up to 10 prints with the base fee. But if the item is a book, you might only include one item given its heavier weight and thus greater shipping costs.
- Additional Fees: If you want to charge a fee for shipping additional items (i.e. items over what’s included in your base fee), you can do so here. For example, an extra $5.00 for every 10 items after what’s included with the base fee.
- Size Designation: This is an optional field to group shipping of items that all have the size you select. For example, you have a book with a shipping price of $10 for two items and a size designation of “small,” and a framed print with a shipping price of $15 for two items and a size designation of “small” - a customer who orders both will have the shipping grouped because the size designation is the same. They will pay the higher of the two fees.
2. If you’d like, click the "Add Another Shipping Option" button to add more options. Otherwise, click the "Save" button when you’ve finalized your choices.
Now that you're back on the Self-Fulfilled Prints and Products page, you can change the order in which your items will display to buyers. You may choose to alter this sequence by dragging and dropping the products within the list - that way they appear on this page in the order in which they will be displayed on your website.
If you ever want to create a similar self-fulfilled print or product, you can click the "copy" link under the "Actions" column. Or if you want to delete a print or product offer, click the "delete" link.
Pricing Self-fulfilled Prints and Products
Once you've created your self-fulfillment prints and products, the next step is to create a Pricing Profile. Here are the steps:
1. Select "Sell" > "Pricing Profiles" from the Navigation Bar, and either click the green "Add Profile" button to create a new Prints and Products Pricing Profile or click one of your existing Prints and Products profiles.
2. Fill in the required fields. In the "Inventory & Prices" section, click the "+Add a Vendor" button and select "Self-Fulfilled/Print Vendor Network."
3. All of the self-fulfillment items you’ve created will appear, ready to be added to your Pricing Profile. In the blank "Price" fields provided next to each print/product name, enter the price at which you’d like to offer that particular print/product (leave the field blank if you do not want to offer a particular option in this profile).
4. When you're finished setting your prices, click the "Save Pricing Profile" button at the bottom of the page.
5. Now that you have created or updated a Pricing Profile, you need to apply it to your galleries or images that you want to make available for this particular self-fulfilled item. Check out our detailed Applying Pricing Profiles tutorial to learn more. This is the final step of the self-fulfillment setup process!
Selling Self-Fulfilled Prints & Products
You've set up and priced all your self-fulfilled prints and products -- what's next? And what happens after a purchase is made? Find out below.
1. When someone purchases a self-fulfilled item, you will be notified via email. The order will also appear in "Sell" > "My Sales" under "Pending Self Fulfillment" with a status of "Pending Fulfillment."
2. If you're fulfilling your print or product on your own, you can close it out by clicking on the invoice number, then clicking the "Complete Order" button at the bottom of the page. By default, this sends the buyer a shipment notification by email, but you can disable this by unchecking the "Email buyer shipment details" box. You can also choose to include a tracking number and/or other internal reference number.
Alternatively, you can forward your order to any lab in the Print Vendor Network, at which point the fulfillment is placed in the hands of the selected vendor. For more on sending self-fulfilled orders to a lab from the Print Vendor Network, check out our detailed Print Vendor Network tutorial.